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Council of Europe
Country of Decision : Council of Europe
Court Name : CoE: European Court of Human Rights [ECHR]
Date of decision : 01/02/2018
Type : Judgment
ECLI : ECLI:CE:ECHR:2018:0201JUD000937315
Case Number/Citation/ Document Symbol : Application no. 9373/15

M.A. (Algeria) v France


ECHR rules on return of rejected asylum seeker convicted for terrorist acts

An Algerian national had been sentenced to 7 years’ imprisonment and issued a permanent exclusion order from French territory, for involvement in a conspiracy to prepare acts of terrorism. His asylum application was lodged in 2014 (having waited 14 years before seeking refugee status) and rejected. He was removed to Algeria and taken there into police custody. The Court noted that the applicant was convicted in France for acts of terrorism and, as recalled in the Daoudi case (§ 65), reaffirmed the importance of the issues of counter-terrorism. In the face of such a threat, the Court considered that it is legitimate for the Contracting States to show great firmness towards those who contribute to acts of terrorism, which it can not in any way condone. The Court reiterated that the expulsion of an alien by a Contracting State may raise a problem under Article 3 and the responsibility of the State concerned under the Convention, where there are substantial grounds for believing that the person concerned, if expelled to the country of destination, will run a real risk of being subjected to treatment contrary to Article 3. For all of these reasons, and in particular with regard to the profile of the applicant who is not only suspected of links to terrorism, but has been the subject of a serious conviction in France of which the Algerian authorities are aware, the Court considered that at the time of his return to Algeria there was a real and serious risk that he would be exposed to treatment contrary to Article 3 of the Convention (referring, mutatis mutandis to Chahal v. United Kingdom , 15 November 1996, § 106, Reports of judgments and decisions 1996-V, Ben Salah v. Italy , n o 38128/06 , § 7, 24 March 2009, Soltana v. Italy , no o 37336/06 , §§ 14-15, 24 March 2009, CBZ c. Italy , n o 44006/06 , § 7, 24 March 2009 and Daoudi § 71). The Court accordingly concluded that by sending the applicant back to Algeria, the French authorities have violated Article 3 of the Convention.


European Convention on Human Rights;


Council of Europe, European Court of Human Rights [ECHR], M.A. (Algeria) v France, Application no. 9373/15 , ECLI:CE:ECHR:2018:0201JUD000937315, 01 February 2018. Link redirects to the English summary in the EASO Case Law Database.